Below is a Zenit translation of Pope Francis’ address to participants of the meeting with the “Royal Institute for Interfaith Studies” in Amman, Jordan, organized by the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, in the Vatican’s Paul VI Hall this morning, before the Wednesday General Audience:
It ‘s a pleasure for me to welcome you. And thank you so much that you have come here for that greeting.
I was very, very happy – and remember much – my visit to Jordan. It is a beautiful memory that I carry with me.
The work you do is a work of construction. We live in a time when we have become accustomed to the destruction that makes war. And the work of dialogue, of approaching one another, always helps us build.
In a meeting of this kind, the most important word is dialogue. And dialogue is coming out of one’s self, with the word, and listening to the word of the other. The two words come together, the two thoughts meet. It is the first step of a journey.
After this encounter of the word, the hearts meet and a dialogue of friendship begins, which ends with a shaking of hands. Word, heart, hands. It is simple! A child can do it … Why can’t we? And this is – small, small, small – the step of construction, of friendship, of society. We all have a common Father, we are brothers. We go down this road, which is beautiful! I thank you because you are convinced that it is good to go on this road.
Thank you so much, again. I humbly ask you to pray for me and I promise to pray for you. Thank you![Original Text: Italian] [Translation by Deborah Castellano Lubov]